The Poincaré Recurrence Theorem
In the course of his studies in celestial mechanics, Poincaré discovered a theorem which is remarkable both for its simplicity and for its far-reaching consequences. It is noteworthy also for having initiated the modern study of measure-preserving transformations, known as ergodic theory. From our point of view, this “recurrence theorem” has a special interest, because in proving it Poincaré anticipated the notions of both measure and category. Publication of his treatise, “Les méthodes nouvelles de la mécanique céleste” , antedated slightly the introduction of either notion.
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